LIFE AND THE WORLD
Is life difficult or easy? What are some of the difficulties?
For Michele life is difficult:
He experiences betrayal as his best friend sold his secret out to Felice for a driving lesson.
“Salvatore Scardaccione had sold me for a driving lesson.” (Pg.147)
“He was my best friend.” (Pg.148) - notice the past tense
He is burdened with the knowledge of his father’s as well as the rest of the adult’s sins and criminal activity.
“Monsters don’t exist. It’s men you should be afraid of, not monsters.”(Pg.19)
“Why didn’t they give him back to here? What use was a barmy little boy to them? Filippo’s mother was distressed, you could see that. If she asked on television it meant she cared a lot about her son.” (Pg.87)
“It had been papa and the others who taken the boy away from the lady on the television.” (Pg.87)
Michele is conflicted between his sense of duty/responsibility to Filippo and the promise he made with his father to not see the boy.
“I could go up. But papa’s voice held me before.” (Pg.170)
“I won’t go there, don’t worry, everybody. I’ve sworn I won’t. But the hill was there, and it was waiting for me.” (Pg.169)
As Michele sees the darker side of his father, he felt betrayed and Michele also lost his trust in him.
“Papa was the bogeyman. By day he was good, but at night he was bad.”(Pg.87)
“While I told the story, I could see Papa cutting off Filipo’s ears and putting them in his pocket.” (Pg.89)
“Papa made the scissors sign with his fingers. ‘Two ears we’ll cut off. Two.’” (Pg.86)
For the adults life (from the South) is difficult:
They are unsatisfied with their life in Acqua Traverse and have such strong desire to overcome poverty that they turned to crime. They justify their actions by convincing themselves it’s necessary to live a better life. They, even Pino, see the boy as a way to freedom from Acqua Traverse and wealth beyond what they possess.
“Don’t you want to get away from Acqua Traverse?” (Pg.157)
“Why didn’t they give him back to here? What use was a barmy little boy to